“So if the Son sets you free, you will be free indeed.” John 8:36
Just imagine, living a life where nothing matters. A life where risk is paramount and failure is subject only to the level of risk. What if life could be lived without the possibility of effect? Where the response of others matters not? Free to be all I want to be and soar the skies of life, moved only by the shifting winds. Did I say free to be?
This past week I watched the 1998 movie, Rounders, starring Matt Damon who plays a man with a gambling lifestyle of big bets and bigger losses. In the movie Damon’s character sits around the table with the toughest card shark around with the confidence of high return. On an apparent strong hand he puts it all on the line, betting every chip of the $30,000 he brought to the table. In a matter of a second, that confidence turned to fear while he watched his life savings zero out.
Living in true freedom takes risk! But what truly is the price? God has called me (us) to live a life free in Christ and yet, I remain shackled to the insecurities of my own understandings. He says to trust in Him, but to trust in all His ways means a complete abandonment to self and releasing the grip of all I want and receiving all He wants.
What if, I’m living my life not as free as God has intended it to be? What if, even in my limited knowledge of knowing Christ has set me free I am not nearly as free as I’d thought? In the midst of crisis, or when things just don’t go the way I had ever hoped or planned, what about that moment gives way to the very essence of Christ in me? Subjecting myself to the landslide of failures over and over again against the heavy terrain on the steep side of that mountain of healing gives the impression there is far more I must do before I am truly set free. But God’s freedom does not come after the journey, but instead within the journey as I experience the very presence of Christ in me, through me! It’s facing the biggest, most dangerous, risky moment of life, where anything and everything I’ve ever dreamed is on the line and placing it all in the arms of Jesus. It’s not to say that the outcome will be any better and become rosy red, in fact it can all disappear, but God doesn’t want me to climb this mountain alone to find God waiting at the top. That’s not freedom! He wants to be in every step, every treacherous slip, every strained ounce of progress . . . that’s freedom to be!
It’s when all seems lost that our vision clouds with uncertainty, but when I am walking in intimate fellowship with Christ in all things — loss becomes gain. For me, it’s living life from salvation, not for salvation. It’s living life from His grace, not for grace. It’s living life from His acceptance, not for my acceptance. It’s living life from His love, not for love.
Dear Lord Jesus, I so often wrestle with living for others instead of from you. There is nothing more important to me than living in full obedience to you. Unshackle the chains of insecurity I have placed around my own mind and renew it with the confidence of Christ in the freedom of life that only comes through you! I love you, I love you, I love you my Abba . . . Daddy, I love you!
It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery. Galatians 5:1